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. Sep 2018 .
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Doctrines & Morals
 
 
Homilies/Reflections

WITHOUT ONENESS, WE HAVE NO FUTURE. (Acts 1:15-17,20-26; 1 John 4:11-16; John 17:11-19)
By REV. FR. PAUL ANIGBORO

Why do we quarrel and disagree most times? We do this because we diverse position on certain issues. When we talk about ONENESS,  we refer to a reality beyond ONE as in just one part. Oneness refers to the bond that brings different parts together to form a whole that can in turn be referred to as one. For example, a football team, a choir and the rest. That Messi is good footballer does not mean he alone can play against 11 players. 
 
Today, in the gospel reading, Jesus prayed for his disciples (including us) to be one as he is one with the father. Why this prayer for Oneness? When the disciples are one and united, they will do wonders and the gospel will spread faster. In Genesis 11:1-7, in the story of the towel of Babel, we find the strength of being one. The oneness of the people of the earth at that time brought success and progressing the building of the tower. But when their language was confused, they started experiencing problems and eventually everything fell apart. 
 
Jesus prayed for Oneness so that his disciples can get to that level of being ONE in word and action. *One of the easiest way to destruction and failure in life is through disunity.* This has affected many families, societies and nations. It is often said that, "together we stand but divided we fall."
 
Oneness brings about unity and progress. In oneness, every part is important but not one is indispensable. We see this clearly in the first reading (Acts 1:15-26) where the position of Judas had to be filled. This position needed to be taken by another person. The position was important but the person of Judas was not indispensable. 
 
The 2nd reading (1 John 4:11-16) tells us about the phenomenon that should actually bind the various parts that makes up the oneness. This is love. The apostle John advised that just as God loves us we too must love one another. We cannot achieve oneness, if we fail to love. Love sustains unity and oneness. 
 
Their are factors that threatens our oneness and unity and they include:
1. Ethnicity and tribalism. Nigeria has more than 250 ethnic groups and languages. It's pathetic that we bring this even to the church. We judge people based on their ethnicity and not what the person can do. Until we start seeing ourselves as one, we can't achieve unity. 
 
2, Gossip. Today we celebrate 52nd World communication Sunday with the theme: "The truth shall set you free (John 8:32): Fake news and journalism for peace". In his message, Pope Francis addressed the issue of fake news as it threatens our unity and talks on the importance of being agents of truth and passing across the right information at all times. We must be weary of gossip. It destroys. 
 
3. Lack of forgiveness. This threatens unity also. We must be ready to let go of all hurts and injure. No need keeping it in our hearts. 
 
4. Jealousy and boasting. These also we must be careful of. Jealously stops us from appreciating people and when we have a gift, no need to boast about it. Be humble in carrying out your work. 
 
As we March into the last but one Sunday of Easter and the last Sunday before Pentecost, let us be conscious of the fact that without Oneness we have no future, without unity we fall apart, without being in one accord the coming of the Holy Spirit and the inspiration of his gifts and fruits will elude us. Now is the time to mend fences. 
 
Lord, keep us united always in word and in action. Amen. 
 
Good morning and do have a restful Sunday. God loves you.
 
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